In our family, pie is a favorite year-round food, not something just reserved for Thanksgiving. In fact, at Thanksgiving, pie-not turkey-is the most important dish served. Our family always makes our pies on the day before Thanksgiving. Cooking the pies the day before, allows the pies cool and be ready to serving anytime on Thanksgiving (even breakfast), and leaves your oven available for turkey and hot rolls.
When I was a sophomore in college, I came home for Thanksgiving. This year, we not only made our favorite pies, but we also made an extra eight pies for a local charity Thanksgiving dinner, bringing our total up to 15 pies. This set a new standard in our family, and since then, even when we are not all gathered together for Thanksgiving, we always share how many and which types of pies we made.
This pie crust recipe comes from my mom’s old Betty Crocker Cookbook. It is delicious and simple to make. And since it is dairy-free, it is perfect for your holiday season.
Learning how to make a perfect pie crust is a bit of an art, and might take a bit of practice to achieve a perfect flaky crust. But you can do it!
This recipe makes 2, 9 inch crusts. (Or in other words, 2 bottoms for two pumpkin pies, or a top and a bottom for an apple).
Flaky, Dairy-Free Pie Crust
2 cups all-purpose flour, (280 grams)
1/2 tsp salt, (3 grams)
1/2 cup oil, (90 grams)
3-4 Tbsp ice-cold water (85 grams).
Place flour in a bowl. Add salt and whisk together with a balloon whisk or the whisk attachment on your mixer.
Pour in oil and whisk just until the mixture resembles a course meal. If using a whisk instead of a machine whisk, a fork with the whisk is helpful.
The flour/oil combination should look a little dry. If not, add a little extra flour. In the second picture following this paragraph, the crust needs a little more flour to have a nice flaky crust. Without a little more flour, the crust will be too oily and crumbly.
Now using a fork to gently stir, add enough ice water to create a dough. Don’t over mix. The pastry dough doesn’t need to be perfectly evenly mixed. When there is enough water, it will clump together into a ball.
Divide dough into two halves. Roll out dough in between two layers of plastic wrap (like Saran wrap) or on a flexible rolling mat with saran wrap on top.
Using the plastic wrap or the flexible rolling mat, place the dough in the pie pan. When the dough is centered, peel the plastic or rolling mat off of the pie. Trim the edges.
Either poke holes with a fork and bake (425º for 10 minutes) as an empty pie crust, or fill and then bake as directed with pie filling directions.